Australian retail sales decline, online sales increase in September quarter

According to Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) figures, retail sales fell a record 4.4% in the September quarter after the blockade of Australia’s two largest state economies.

“The delta outbreak from late June caused long-term blockages in many mainland jurisdictions, and restrictions caused many retailers to close physical stores throughout the September quarter,” said ABS’s quarterly economy as a whole. Ben James, Director of Statistics, said on November 4th.

“This has resulted in the largest quarterly decline in domestic sales ever recorded.”

Sales of food and take-out services (18.7%), department stores (19.5%), and retail sales of shoes and personal belongings (25%) declined significantly.

In contrast, online retail increased 0.9% across the quarter.

Monthly online retail sales reached a record high of $ 4.3 billion in September, 3.4% higher than the previous month’s record, or $ 143 million.

New South Wales (NSW) experienced the largest sales decline (11.6%) of all states and territories, as well as Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory.

All other states and territories experienced increased sales, especially in Western Australia (4.1%).

Adelaide Timbrell, senior economist at ANZ, said the blockade’s blockade had caused a more serious decline in retail than last year.

“Unlike the first blockade last year, the decline in spending that relied on social spending and face-to-face shopping (eating out, larger ticket items) was not offset this time by grocery stockpiles and telecommuting settings. I did, “she said. ..

The Commonwealth Bank (CBA) expects consumer spending to shrink by about 7% during the quarter.

“But CBA household card spending data shows a strong backlash,” said Belinda Allen, senior economist at CBA.

ANZ data show a similar recovery in post-blockade spending, with significant increases in dining, retail, and household products. Timbrell said it was a positive sign of retail volume this quarter.

ABS is also Trade balance It fell to $ 12.2 billion in September. Despite the decline, it is the third highest trade surplus on record.

The decline in exports was driven by a dramatic decline in iron ore prices, but imports fell due to the constraints of the current global supply crisis.

According to Allen, it is estimated that the September quarter trade surplus increased compared to the previous quarter, exports increased and imports decreased.

But she said the reopening of the border is likely to soften the surplus in the coming months as the trade surplus for services declines and exports of tourism, business travel and education return.

Rebecca Chu